There are many free summer reading programs available for kids this summer, and while the rewards vary, the goal is the same. Getting kids to read is great, and getting them to read without rewards is even better. However, sometimes reading rewards serve as a great incentive, and your kids will likely read a little more than they otherwise would have, if they are rewarded for their efforts. If you do not have a summer reading program where you live, making your own summer reading program can be a very successful way of getting kids to read all summer long as well.
The Summer Reading Program 2012:
The Barnes and Noble Summer Reading program rewards kids with a free book, once they have read eight books.
Print out the summer reading journal.
- Read 8 books and add them to your summer reading journal.
- Bring the summer reading journal to your local Barnes & Noble store between May 22 and September 4th, 2012.
- Your child can then choose between select books from his or her age group.
Download the Barnes and Noble summer reading form.
Chuck E Cheese offers free tokens, when kids read this summer.
- Print out the summer reading calendar.
- Fill out the calendar, every time your child reads, and bring it in to Chuck E Cheese
Each child can only use one free token offer per day, to get the free tokens, you will have to make a food purchase.
Half Price Books has a great summer reading program in 2012, and I sure wish we had a Half Pirce Books store in Florida.
At the Half Price Books summer reading program, kids 14 and under can earn a $5 gift certificate for every month that they read for 300 minutes or more.
- Download the Summer Reading Log
- Once the child has reached 300 minutes of reading, bring the completed reading log to your local Half Price Books store and receive a $5 gift certificate.
- You must hand in your June reading logs by Sunday, July 8, and the July reading log must be handed in by Sunday, August 5.
You can find Half Price Books stores in: Arizona, California, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin.
The Book Adventure reading program by Sylvan is another great way to keep kids motivated this year. Kids in grades K-8 can take quizzes on book that they read, and in return they can earn special prizes. The prizes include: Free six-month subscription to Highlights, a free candy bar, downloads such as playbooks and activity books, and e books.
- Parents sign up for your own Book Adventure Account
- Add each of your children to your account
- Search for a book that you own, or have brought home from the library.
- Click on the quiz, and let your children answer the questions to earn points.
I love the Book Adventure program because of the 8000+ quizzes, as I use these to ensure that my son has understood everything in the book that he has read.
You can learn more about the Sylvan reading program here.
The Scholastic Summer Reading program is all about getting kids to log their reading minutes. As far as I can tell their are no real rewards, only virtual rewards and sweepstakes. This summer reading program does have a handy tool to log minutes, and their are reading tips for parents.
The Pottery Barn Kids summer reading program is another great reading program, which rewards kids with
- Download the Pottery Barn Kids summer reading list, and check it off as the kids read all the books.
- Complete the reading list
- Download the Pottery Barn Certificate, and bring it to your local Pottery Barn Kids Store before August 31st.
- Your kids will receive a free book.
Limit 1 per customer. Promotion starts on 5/17/2012 and ends on 8/22/2012. Must redeem by 8/31/2012. Open only to children under 10 years of age on any day during the promotion period. Must present completed Award-Winning or Early Reader book list to receive a free book at participating Pottery Barn Kids stores.
Your Local Library:
Check with your local library to see, which kind of summer reading program they have available. My sons have gotten lots of great prices through our local library’s summer reading program including free tickets to see the Dolphins play here in South Florida.
Each library in your county may have different reading programs, so if you are close to several it is a great opportunity for your child to earn more rewards for his or her reading efforts.
Your Child’s School:
Check with your child’s school to see, if the school has any reading rewards. Our kids gets a free ice cream during lunch, if they complete their reading list.
Create Your Own Summer Reading Program
Every year I create my own summer reading program for the kids, and it is usually quite successful. I simply set up an Excel document for each child, and then they get to write down the books they read. For each regular kids book they earn 10 cents, and for each chapter book over 100 pages they earn $0.25. My oldest son also earns $0.15 for each book report that he writes about chapter books.
At the end of the summer, the kids get to use their reading rewards on books. They have the choice between purchasing a book at the book store, buying several books from the thriftstore, or buying a book online with the amount of money that they have earned.
The two previous years the boys have chosen to buy books at the thriftstore, and they each returned home with quite a stack of books. However, this year it sounds as if they are both leaning toward buying a book at the bookstore or online. The boys have become very specialized in the books that they read, and our thriftstore simply does not have a big selection of shark or pilot books.
If you want to find other great free and frugal things to do with the kids this summer, make sure to check out the Free Summer Fun tab here at Frugality Is Free.
Do your kids participate in any official summer reading programs, or do you create your own summer reading program?